Christopher Johnson, a non-Catholic who has taken up the cudgels for the Church so frequently that I have named him Defender of the Faith, has a warning for us:
Most people figured out a long time ago that the ultimate goal of the secular and Christian left in general and the Catholic left in particular is the Episcopalianization of the Roman Catholic Church. Hence the wild leftist enthusiasm for anything Pope Francis says that sounds like a signal that Rome might be backing away from some of its more objectionable (to the left) doctrines.
Toward that end, the National Catholic [HAW, HAW, HAW, HEE, HEE, HEE, OH MY GOD, STOP IT, MAN, I’M BEGGING YOU, YOU’RE KILLING ME HERE, HAW, HAW, HAW, HEE, HEE, HEE!!] Reporter lets a retired Episcopal minister named Warner White write a bunch of really stupid crap:
It was a slippery slope. Once I began to refer to the Holy Spirit in the feminine in my sermons and in the creed, certain results followed — slowly at first, but inevitably.
Why in the world did you start doing that, Warner? Because PATRIARCHY!!
“We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life.” I didn’t notice right away, but after a while, it sunk in. I was calling the Holy Spirit “Lord.” The Holy Spirit, I was saying, not only gives life and proceeds from the Father and the Son, she is “the Lord.” I was co-opting the word “Lord.” In my vocabulary — and that of anyone else who called her “Lord” — this previously masculine word was now including the feminine.
Not too long after I began this new practice, I also retired as an Episcopal parish priest.
Warner, my man, and please pardon the use of the masculine there, you “retired” as a priest LONG before that.
I became a parishioner. I sat in pews. And I noticed how little difference in the patriarchal nature of our worship this change was making, even when we had a woman priest at the altar. The language and imagery remained overwhelmingly masculine.
Told you it was the PATRIARCHY!! Those bastards.
I also noticed that the priest and a lot of people around me were making “inclusive” language substitutions. When we gave thanks to the Lord our God we didn’t give “him” thanks anymore, we gave “our” thanks. Many people were now substituting “God’s kingdom” for “his kingdom,” and “God’s holy name” for “his holy name.”
Warner has two words of advice for people who do that. Sack up.
Ugh. I see this as timidity, evasion, a minuscule half-measure. Why evade the issue? Why not just use the feminine? I have been saying, “give her thanks,” “her kingdom,” “her holy name,” and the like. Whenever a reference is being made to God and it is not clearly a reference to the Father or the Son, I am using the feminine.
If Warner gets his way, that Father/Son stuff is on the way out.
I have slipped a long way down the slope. A feminine God is not only Lord, she is also King. And not only do I speak of the Spirit in the feminine, I now speak of God in the feminine about as often as in the masculine.
I have never read a better illustration of Episcopalian air-headedness than Warner provides here.
But as a priest, the daily office immerses me in the PATRIARCHY!! of the psalms. We can’t change the PATRIARCHY!! of our heritage. That’s how God has revealed herself to us over the centuries.
So God’s kind of a screw-up then?
So in reading Scripture, in seeking its meaning, I do not feel free to make changes in the text. But in my worship, I do feel free to do so. When I pray the psalms, it seems to me that I am free to make changes that express my heart.
Son of a…aw, skip it. You have to give Double W this much. Dude’s all-in.
So I have gone through the Prayer Book psalms and substituted feminine pronouns for masculine wherever the reference is not clearly to a specific male, such as David and Moses and Joseph.
Any male human being reading this can sit Christianity out since any manifestation of masculinity whatsoever gives Warner the vapors.
I call these committed psalms.
Because anybody stupid enough to read them ought to be?
They go the path of commission rather than the path of omission. Further, they require a commitment on the part of those who use them. We commit ourselves to a path of reparation, of repairing the relation of female and male in our life and worship. Similarly, this is committed language in contrast to inclusive language. This language is not inclusive; it overdoes the feminine on purpose. It is matriarchal language instead of patriarchal.
So basically, it’s totally dishonest. An absolute frickin’ lie. Yeah, great Christian witness there, Warner.